Kentucky Derby: Fountain of Youth Fallout

Profile Picture: D.S. Williamson

D.S. Williamson

March 6th, 2018

Good Magic, the 2017 Eclipse Award 2-Year-Old Champion, hit the racetrack for the first time in this past Saturday's Fountain of Youth Stakes. How did Good Magic fair? Not that well. But, all hope isn't lost for the Chad Brown trained horse.

Below, I get into why along with thoughts on the other Top 4 finishers in this year's Fountain of Youth Stakes.

Kentucky Derby:  Fountain of Youth Fallout

1. Promises Fulfilled

The Dale Romans trained Promises Fulfilled took the lead in the Fountain of Youth and never looked back. Before getting too excited about the performance, it's difficult to not notice that he ran a 1/4 mile in .23.80. He got a half-mile in :48.39. That's like walking over Gulfstream Park's dirt track.

2. Strike Power

Jockey Luis Saez didn't want to get into a pace duel with Promises Fulfilled. He allowed Strike Power to hang back before going after the winner around the turn. It turned out to be the wrong move. But, it's hard to take too many negatives out of Strike Power's performance. He held off Good Magic for the place while putting in a good effort to catch Promises Fulfilled.

3. Good Magic

The 2-year-old champ didn't appear comfortable at any point during the race. He kept running. That's a good sign. But, he doesn't appear to have grown all that much since his fantastic Breeders' Cup Juvenile win. Good Magic's third place finish in the Fountain of Youth brings up a ton of questions, right? Not so fast. Keep reading to find out what I think!

4. Machismo

The More Than Ready sired colt made the most eye-popping move of the entire race. His connections, owners Looch Racing Stables and trainer Anthony T. Quartarolo, aren't household names. Jockey Albin Jimenez isn't a household name, either. Does Machismo have a shot to improve enough to challenge for the Kentucky Derby?

2018 Fountain of Youth Stakes:  The Fallout

The biggest fallout is what to do about Good Magic. Good Magic was a 10 to 1 second choice to win the Kentucky Derby. He kept running on, but he didn't show the burst of speed that he showed when finishing second in the Champagne Stakes. With that being written, I'm not ready to give up on Chad Brown's horse. I think there's a good chance Good Magic bounces back beautifully in his next start, likely the Bluegrass Stakes at Keeneland.

Strike Power might have won the race if he had pressed Promises Fulfilled from the outset. What I love about how he ran is that he kept fighting until the end. I think he's got a ton of ability. Will he get 1 1/4 miles? I don't know. Speightstown's progeny are often great sprinters and milers. He does have Medaglia D'Oro on his mom's side, though.

Promises Fulfilled got away with an easy lead. That doesn't mean he can win the Kentucky Derby. It does mean he must show more. He won't get away with an easy lead on the First Saturday in May if Audible, McKinzie, and Instilled Regard show up.

Machismo probably isn't good enough to win the Kentucky Derby. Still, his eye-catching move impressed! I think he's worth a look as a long shot possibility if (and it's a big if), he runs well in his next Derby prep.

Good luck this week!